Mark 4.37-38 And a furious storm of wind of hurricane proportions arose, and the waves kept beating into the boat, so that it was already becoming filled. But He [Jesus] was in the stern of the boat, asleep on the leather cushion; and they awoke Him and said to Him, Master, do You not care that we are perishing? [amp]
Without warning, the peaceful calm of the Sea of Galilee can be transformed into a violent raging storm which can quickly turn deadly. A storm in March 1992 sent 10ft high waves crashing into downtown Tiberias, causing massive damage. I read a story yesterday about a tour group crossing the Sea of Galilee, when suddenly the wind, rain and waves began to kick up. A young man on the boat thought “What would Jesus do?” and stood up to rebuke the storm. When he spoke out, “Peace, be still” the rain and wind kept coming but the engine of the boat immediately cut out.
Sometimes when we pray things get worse. And sometimes God seems silent. Almost like He’s asleep at the helm.
I’ve been through my fair share of storms. One in particular, really stands out to me. I was doing all the right things for all the right reasons, when all of a sudden I found myself in the middle of chaos. People I had trusted turned on me, our finances dried up and doors of opportunity, which were once wide open, now seemed nailed shut. And through it all, God seemed strangely quiet.
I did what the disciples did. I worked harder, using every ounce of strength and skill I had just to stay afloat but nothing helped. I prayed. I fasted. I looked for answers in Scripture but found nothing. I could feel my frustration and anger giving way to bitterness. “God don’t you even care?”
The disciples got into the boat that day only because Jesus told them to. Jesus was the one responsible for leading them into a storm and then when they needed Him the most, Jesus was fast asleep!
I wonder how long it took the disciples before they decided to wake Jesus up? How exhausted were they before they came to the realisation that this was a battle they could not win?
Not every storm we face is a devilish scheme aimed at our destruction. But sometimes God invites chaos around our life simply to remind us that no matter the size of the storm, we are never alone. Jesus is in the boat with us.
Instead of coming immediately to our rescue, He lovingly waits. He waits for us to stop striving and doing things in our own strength. He waits for us to come to Him and tell Him how much we need Him.